Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Lost Faith, Losing Hope

I don't cry much anymore, I ran out of tears after Anthony died. But yesterday I couldn't seem to get through an hour without at least one cry. I'm very lucky to have Peter, he's very understanding and supportive, but like all men - he hates to see (hear) his woman cry.

I cried because I don't think the Keven I once knew still exists. He's a shell of who he once was. He lives in his head - which is a dark and scary place. He uses Klonopin (prescribed) and/or heroin to feel normal for as long as the high lasts, then he plummets back to the depths of his despair in the form of self-hatred, depression, fear and debilitating anxiety.

He was bad off before he went to prison, and ten times worse than that when he came home. He was made to do things in there that he doesn't want to talk about (and this kid tells me everything - he always has since a child - I know things I wish I didn't know but it helps him to talk to me so I listen).

Is another rehab the answer? He's been to at least ten (not counting detoxes and sober livings, hospital stays and jail/prison time).

I am enabling him to keep using by letting him stay here with a roof over his head, all his needs met, and no consequences for his drug use (other than what he inflicts upon himself).

In the past I've found him places to live (sober living, hotels, an apartment in another county). A few times I had him arrested. A few times I just kicked him to curb with all his stuff packed in trash bags. Once I even stopped my car on the way to a detox (in Garden Grove) and kicked him out right then and there because he said "I'm not sure I want to do this" and pushed me over the edge.

I've sold his stuff to pay for his drug debts. I've paid to get back items he pawned. I've depleted my savings more than once. I wracked up my credit cards more than once. I am once again broke and in debt.

He's been to psychiatrists (mostly that give him whatever he wants and don't bother to try and diagnose him) and therapists and tried different modalities of treatment.

He's seen friends die, one died in bed next to him and he woke up to find her. He's almost died three times (officially) and who knows how many times I don't know about. He's had sepsis, MRSA, sever abscesses. He had a positive HIV test and refused to be treated. I lived thinking he was dying for two years until he was retested and it was negative. He has Hep C. 

So here we are 10 years in as of this month.  I will never forget the night he woke me around 2 am.  He and his girlfriend at the time (who is now a nurse, we are still in touch) sat on my bed and told me he'd been using heroin but was going to stop because if not, she would leave him.  He was 17, she was 16.  She hung around for several more months and was with him when he attempted suicide (cry for help) and I'd take her to the mental hospital to visit him.  She finally gave up on him as did all future girlfriends, and guy friends.

I'll never give up on him.  But I don't have much hope left.  I just can't seem to muster it.  I lost my faith in "God" a long time ago after being a faithful and committed Christian for about 18 years.  But that's another story for another time.

I desperately tried to save Anthony, but couldn't.  I've been desperately trying to save Keven - will I be able to?  No.  I can't, it doesn't work like that.  Somewhere deep inside himself he has to find the will to live and to stop using, but can he?  I don't think he can.  I think I may lose him one way or another.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara


  1. Peace, love and hope dear sister.

    Life is so heartbreaking.

    These days I have way more questions than answers.

    Even so, Keven is still on my prayer list.

    I do not pray as much as I used to but this post might help me to pray more.

    Love you sis!

  2. I so get all of this Barbara. Im out of answers. My girl told me recently she is tired of fighting this fight. Tired of seeing dr's, tired of rehabs, tired of hoping, tired of a list of things that might help that she can't mange to push herself to follow through on, tired of nothing changing....there is something more than "just" drugs going on with our kids and a lot of people in traditional recovery dont understand that. We are seeing a new dual dx psychiatrist on Friday. But I think we both are walking in feeling hopeless. I am sorry you are here too.

  3. Much love to you and Keven, Barbara. You are both frequently in my thoughts and Robyn's too. We both still have hope, but we are not close to the situation so maybe it's easier.

  4. Hi Barbara, I just found your blog by chance. I too have a son, 28 years old that has been a heroin addict for 10 years. I am the only one left in his life all other family are done and not in contact with him nor will any return calls if he tries to contact. I moved to California from Texas last June to get away from it all. My son was in Florida. 4 days before Harricane Maria I flow him to California. Some thing in me had to do it. As it turned out he would have been homeless no job nothing had he gone through that harricane in Florida. Now I'm right back where I was a year ago living this nightmare of addiction again. I just wanted to write this only because I felt by reading your blog you would know why I did it. I have two other adult children that are so mad at me they aren't communicating unless I call and then they are always too busy to talk. Thank you for your blog entries. I feel like I'm not alone in this battle.

  5. Hello Barbra,

    I wish I could give you some answer. I stumbled upon your blog myself. I am involved with a woman, who I knew going into was an addict. She's 29 and been using since she was 15. It all started from abuse and bad childhood and her father being a user. Which is weird now because he is totally clean and super hard on her about getting clean.

    But anyway she struggled for awhile, first guy she ever dated who is not an abuser, takes her money etc. I met her working as a bouncer at a club, she was a dancer. She got picked up the previous winter for possession and while dating she got sentenced to a rehab program. Got into an altercation there and did 4 months for probation violation.

    She came out and got stuff secretly within the hour before I picked her up. Then overdosed after being clean for 4 months. She has forsaken her family, her daughters, and I am at a loss. She was doing well in the program and jail once she had sobered up. Her whole family thought I seemed to bring some part out of her and maybe this time it was going to stick. Alas it doesn't look like it. I am not sure what I am going to do.

    I have been reading your stuff along with other research trying to figure out the best way to help her. She is so hard on herself and feels worthless a lot of the time. She has done some pretty rough things to get her high, turning tricks, dancing, criminal stuff. Breaks my heart because she is such a great person but doesn't see it. Her mom let me know when we first started dating she had some bi-polar issues and I found out she was Hep C positive. Yet I never want to give up on her.....

    Even after we had a big fight yesterday and she threatened to leave and go do her thing I was at the point to just let her. She apologized and she seems so lost. I love her and want to find ways to help her. I wonder if her going back to jail will change anything or at least keep her alive.....

    My point is I feel your pain. I'm new to this over the last year, I can't even imagine what this is going to be like..... but I give you so much credit for writing and sharing. It is nice to read someone elses struggles and understand my feelings.

  6. Buddy, I am so sorry I never responded to your comment. I intended too and then it slipped my mind. Thanks for being so open and honest about your situation. The thing I've learned (even though I don't like it!) is that we can't help them change, they have to want to. We can offer resources and suggestions but they have to WANT to get better. Sometimes I think they can't want to get better until they have the drugs our of their system long enough to think clearly, but that doesn't always work either. There is no such thing as hitting bottom (IMO) because the bottom is death, its too late. Addiction truly is a family disease (which applies to boyfriends too) and if you choose to stay with her when she is like this, you can't expect her to change. The change has to come first or I'm afraid you'll just be suffering for years to come. You seem like a very caring and great guy, so please don't take this the wrong way, but you have some issues to deal with as well, like why would you choose to get involved with her in the first place? I'm not judging you, I AM YOU. I am very co-dependent with my son, but guess which one of us suffers? He just goes on his merry way getting high whenever he pleases. Email me if you want to talk more, my email is on my profile. I'd love to hear an update.


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